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  #1 (permalink)  
Old June 19th, 2001, 05:56 PM
Tom Tom is offline
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Default captain's cocktail party

Shame on princess for doing away with the captain's cocktail party on ships that offer Personal Choice Dining.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old June 19th, 2001, 06:16 PM
Carole Dunham
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

Why? Captain's cocktail parties are the most boring invention ever. Only an excuse for free booze.

Carole
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Old June 19th, 2001, 08:56 PM
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

Tom,

One of the major design flaws of MV Grand Princess is that there really is not a suitable place for the Captain's "Welcome Aboard" Cocktail Party.

I agree with you regarding the nature of this event. It's not only free drinks and a proper "welcome aboard" from the Captain, who, by etiquette, is the principal host of all passengers aboard the vessel, but also a good "mixer" where passengers mingle and meet other passengers. It's also nice to see everybody "dressed to the nines" for such an event.

Norm.
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Old June 19th, 2001, 09:14 PM
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

We were just on the Ocean Princess for three back-to-backs: Panama Canal, Mexican Riviera and Coastal. Princess is cutting back all over the place... nothing super drastic, just lots of little things that all add up:
- The dining room and room service menus are not as extensive; and on the Coastal there was no lobster or crab offered at all.
- In the Horizon Court there is no real cream, the yoghurt is fake, no more selection of teas, fewer deserts etc.
- On the Coastal there was no Captain's Circle party.
- At the Captain's Welcome Gala there are no more free drinks. They now sell 'champagne' for $2 a glass.
- Prizes for trivia etc. are now really 'cheap'.

All the above, plus Princess' failure (so far) to refund money owed, and their failure to answer letters after sending us air tickets for the wrong day have me seriously looking at HAL or Celebrity for our next cruise.

I used to be a big Princess fan.
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Old June 19th, 2001, 10:23 PM
Oskidunker
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

What is coastal?
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Old June 20th, 2001, 06:06 AM
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

Then why have formal nights if there is no party to go with it?? The Captain's Party & the Captain Circle Party were the 2 dressy affairs I always look forward to. Great to meet folks, have a few hors d's & a drink before dinner. Is there still the Captain Circle affair??
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Old June 20th, 2001, 09:11 AM
BillG
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

sounds like a good excuse to me. .
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Old June 20th, 2001, 11:07 AM
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

There may not be a Captain's Circle party. There wasn't on our last cruise (see above).
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Old June 20th, 2001, 11:39 AM
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

We had and did attend the Captain's Circle Party on the Grand Princess which is held on the first formal night at the same time of the previous Captain's Welcome Aboard party. No matter whether you enjoy a free drink or not, this has always been a tradition during cruises. If you are a repeater and enjoy parties, then you now only have one venue to attend. The captain posed for pictures, too. which was very nice. I do not know if the captain mingled in the lounges where they were selling the $2 Champagne preceeding the repeaters party. The really good point about these changes were "no lines" for the courtesy introductions to wait in. I still like tradition; On Celebrity you have the Welcome Aboard gathering, the Captain's Club party for members and the repeater's party. It is nice to get an opportunity to meet others and relax, dance, socialize while on board.
Bon Voyage.
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Old June 20th, 2001, 10:33 PM
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

Oskidunker,

The "coastal cruise" typically is two or three days at sea (no ports of call) transiting from Vancouver to either Los Angeles or San Francisco. Princess traditionally has sold this as a "Love Boat Sampler" introduction to cruising.
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Old June 20th, 2001, 10:41 PM
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

Bumble Bee,

Regarding your points:

- The dining room and room service menus are not as extensive; and on the Coastal there was no lobster or crab offered at all.

- On the Coastal there was no Captain's Circle party.

The short duration of the "Coastal" cruise does not allow enough time for some of these things. Something has to give.

- In the Horizon Court there is no real cream, the yoghurt is fake, no more selection of teas, fewer deserts etc.

The specialty teas are still available, but you have to ask for them. If enough of us do so, they will decide that it's easier to have them out.

- At the Captain's Welcome Gala there are no more free drinks. They now sell 'champagne' for $2 a glass.

That's disgusting -- but at least they still have the "Welcome Aboard!" event!

- Prizes for trivia etc. are now really 'cheap'.

This isn't new -- but you can't expect expensive prizes for everything. On one cruise, I got a small picture frame refrigerator magnet as a prize and, rather absent-mindedly, put it into the same pocket as my cruise card. Suffice it to say that the cruise card no longer opened the door to my cabin!

OTOH, Princess did come up with some really nice prizes for a Halloween costume contest aboard MV Sun Princess last November!

BTW, I hope that you noted your complaints on your passenger survey at the end of the cruise. At Princess, these surveys do get attention. I have occasionally even attached a separate page with additional comments when the "What could be improved?" section did not provide enough space.

Norm.
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Old June 20th, 2001, 10:45 PM
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

Brenda,

The "Coastal Cruise" where "Bumble Bee" said that there was no Captain's Circle Cocktail Party is only three days long -- so it's basically embarkation day (casual), the next day (Formal, for the Captain's "Welcome Aboard" gathering), and the day before disembarkation (casual). Such a short cruise does not have enough time for another formal night.

I would not interpret a "Coastal Cruise" as being representative of any other Princess Cruise, ths shortest of which are a week in duration.

Norm.
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Old June 20th, 2001, 10:51 PM
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

Nanatravel,

One of the more serious layout problems aboard MV Grand Princess is that there is no single space that is big enough to accommodate an event such as the traditional Captain's "Welcome Aboard" Reception. MV Golden Princess appears to have the same problem.

I have not heard of any other Princess vessels dropping this event.

BTW, there have been two or three separate Captain's Circle receptins on several of my more recent Princess cruises because the show lounge was not large enough to accommodate the number of repeat passengers in a single reception.

Norm.
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  #14 (permalink)  
Old June 20th, 2001, 11:59 PM
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Default Re: captain's cocktail party

Yes, the Coastal is only three days, but it cost more per day than either the Panama Canal or the Mexican Riviera. If they don't hold a Captain's Circle reception because the cruise is not long enough, they also don't have two receptions on cruises of fourteen days or longer which that logic would seem to imply should happen. Are you seriously suggesting they can't find one hour out of two full days at sea to have a Captain's Circle reception?

If Princess wants to market the coastal as a "Love Boat Sampler' cruise - I assume in order to attract 'first timers' in the hopes they will enjoy the experience and consequently book more, longer cruises - they should serve some of the best and favourite menu items. On the first night I raved to the 'rookies' at our table about what to expect on lobster night. They were very disapointed and I was sheepish when no lobster or crab was ever served.

As for the Welcome Aboard receprtion, this from CruiseCritic news - "Because passengers are dining “when and where they want” the reception, typically held just prior to main and late seatings, wasn’t feasible, according to a Princess spokeswoman."

Ask yourself if this excuse for doing away with the reception is not great 'spin doctoring' on Princess' part.... Why exactly could not the reception be held as usual? - 'Personal Choice' diners could simply attend whichever of the 1st or 2nd seating's reception that fit their schedule.

The excuse is pure BS!

I think the shareholders -- read, Norm -- should let someone , -- read, our cabin steward or waiter -- run the company for a month - just to teach the 'big boys' with their Harvard MBAs a lesson or two about customer service.
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